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Dallas Arboretum Spring Break 2016

Hello, Internet!

I haven’t blogged in a while (i.e. two months), so here’s a happy link as a form of my dearest apologies: https://youtu.be/vSlWDlXCelk

Yesterday, I visited the Dallas Arboretum for the first time in ages. The last time I’ve been was when I was in kindergarten; time flies so quickly! Starting from parking, we could notice a difference–a brand new, five-story parking garage was built across the street, and a tunnel connecting it to the arboretum was built as well. Inside, the arboretum showed off even-more grandiose features, such as elaborate water features and terracing. The neat and prim order of all the different flowers and hedges and trees gave me an otherworldly sense, a fantasy of perfectionism. It felt good to indulge in such beauty for a morning, but if I were a garden, I would be unpruned, wild, natural–just like how I am free-flowing, outgoing (only with the right people), and spontaneous as a person. However, I still hope to visit the Dallas Arboretum throughout this year as quick respites from my upcoming year from H-E-double hockey sticks!

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Bonton Farms 

Hey, guys!

Today, with the rest of the StuCo family (who I don’t know too well), I visited a community farm in SE Dallas, one of many “food deserts” in the nation– an urban area in which there are almost no grocery stores or sources of fresh fruits and vegetables. With the help of a $30 mil. federal grant, the neighborhood of Bonton has been transformed; nearly 1300 people have moved into new developments (as seen in the background of the first two pictures), and two lovely fellas, Darren and Regina, helped start this community garden. There is also a new recreation and civic center within walking distance of Bonton Farm-Works that offers a space for events and an after-school program.

There were college students and local young adults watering the crops on such a hot day! It’s evident that everyone in the community appreciates the garden and its positive ripples, the “good vibes” felt throughout the neighborhood. Every few days, the children come to Bonton Farm-Works to help water the plants and, more importantly, feed the animals. Although we did not meet any of those children today, I feel blessed to have the opportunity to observe such positive synergy in a quickly-improving part of town!

The produce includes Swiss chard, radishes, tomatoes, peppers, onions, cabbage, and many herbs. All of the harvested plants and eggs are sold each week at the White Rock Farmers Market. Click on the farm’s Facebook page to learn more.

Now time for some pictures!

BELOW: Some lovely goats and dogs! Many adults brought along their children to see the goats and chickens (which you will see later).BELOW: This one’s my favorite!  BELOW: Chickens (around 200 of them)! These are able to roam freely throughout the day and are actually heritage-breed, not the kind that lays eggs in closed warehouses for shipment to large supermarket chains. A chicken at Bonton take 25 hours to lay an egg, and by the time they are mature, the farm should collect 8 to 9 dozen eggs A DAY (compared to 17 dozen a week now). 

Proud to be here! Thanks for the fulfilling weekend and best wishes, Bonton!  

~MX